The Open Water Swim Academy (OWSA) shares and promotes the camaraderie, fun, exhilaration and joy of open water swimming. Led by Dan Simonelli, an experienced and awarded marathon swimmer, OWSA provides comprehensive coaching and mentoring to swimmers, both competitive and non-competitive, of all ages and skill levels interested in the challenge of open water swimming.

OWSA will help you reach you goal, whether it is swimming into the world-famous La Jolla Cove to explore the ecological reserve’s natural beauty, swimming the Santa Barbara Channel, or even training towards other major swims, including Molokai, Catalina Channel, or the English Channel.

The OWSA coaching program is designed for all experience levels, ensuring the best current open water coaching practices, techniques and training methods. The program can be adapted to meet your individual needs and designed to help you reach your goal.

Using the Technical, Environmental, Mental and Physical (TEMP) coaching method, OWSA has successfully coached swimmers to attempt and complete the Santa Barbara Channel, Molokai, Catalina Channel and the English Channel, as well as other major ratified international swims. OWSA will ensure you are both mentally and physically prepared to attempt your swim.


  • Entries
  • Form and technique
  • Open water skills
  • Waves
  • Rips and currents


  • Safety
  • Wildlife
  • Caves
  • Kelp
  • Snorkeling


  • Coaching
  • Working with fear
  • Goal setting and achieving
  • Skill development
  • Visualization and focus


  • Cross-training
  • Stretching
  • Swimming tests
  • Nutrition

As well as leading OWSA, Dan Simonelli is also a coach with Water World Swim. Water World Swim aims  guide swimmers as they make the transition from pool to open water, inspiring a love and enthusiasm for the sport. Water World Swim organizes practice and non-competitive swims, races and events.